1964-07-01 - Gun Run or Bust
Summary: Shen infiltrates a group of gunrunners. Spider Man tries to "help" by attacking the gang. Cassandra tags along to kick ass.
Related: If there are no related logs, put 'None', — please don't leave blank!
Theme Song: None
shen-kuei peter cassandra-cain 


Harlem.

The dark streets of Harlem are dangerous depending on what kind of clothes you wear and the color of your skin, and this night is no different than any other. Car traffic is a steady come and go, blazing headlights casting a warm glow and highlighting the drops of rain that fall steadily to splash against the dirty asphalt before skating sideways to roll down dirty and clogged gutters, sometimes spilling forth over a clogged drain to wash across the sidewalk where hurried footsteps carry individuals along, trying desperately to get home quickly now that dark has fallen.

The rain and rumbling thunder makes a convenient cover for the gun deal that is taking place behind Moe's Midnight Lounge, a local jazz club rumored to be connected to one of the more prominent gangs in the City. A few trucks and cars are arranged in a loose circle, trunks popped to reveal sheet covered goods that have not yet been revealed. There are a good few, roughly fifteen, armed men standing about, some talking in low slung voices while others keep a wary eye out for trouble.


There is one person here who absolutely stands out. The first reason, and perhaps the most striking, is that she is decidedly female. Five foot seven, with long black hair and serious gray eyes, Shen and her her loose black clothing cut a striking figure amongst the men gathered for the weapons exchange on the docks. She might have dressed for effect- a Chiense woman in American clotehs desigend to evoke a sense of Chinese culture, complete with the Mandarin collar attributed to all Chinese garments in recent years.

The ran pours over Shenhua but she doesnt' seem to react to it, hands claspe quietly behind herself while she watches as the trunks are opened. She is unarmed, a distinct contrast to the people around her, and also seems to be the least nervous, listening itnently despite the cacophony of the storm raging all around. "Mmm. It looks promising so far." The woman starts forward, tilting her head slightly as she does. She starts forward, ending her walk beside one of the open vehicles. "May I take a look?"


The goon beside the trunk looks Shen up and down before finally offering half of a shrug and gesturing toward the trunk with his head. He steps aside so that Shen can take a look, though not far enough away that any funny business can be attempted. The gang members all seem to be on edge, eyes narrowed as they watch through the darkness for anything that looks amiss.

Meanwhile…

Swinging along far above ground level comes a figure dressed a bit oddly. He is wearing what appears to be simple set of sweatpants and a hooded sweatshirt, deep maroon in color. A normal pair of sneakers are worn on his feet, while a red ski mask hides his features from view. He is completely soaked from the rain, though that does not seem to bother him in the least as he shoots what appears to be web after web, swinging on high before landing without a sound on the corner of a rooftop overlooking the weapons transaction. "Hmmm.. and what do we have here?" he muses to himself, his voice muffled by the ski mask.


Shen is taking a moment to go through the weapons in front of her. She checks the rifles first, her expression a deep frown as she makes a point of actually examining the bolts and some of the other inner workings. There's no attempt at funny business so far, at least. The soemwhat intimidating Chinese woman with her foreign accent and severe expression is here for business, after all, to judge by her movements.

Slinging around from webs is something that is not, in and of itself, overly stealthy. If people were to look up more often they might well notice the approach of certai nsuperheroes more often. Shenhua does that now but if she saw the kid in the hooded sweatshirt perched on a nearby rooftop she doesn't actually stare at them. There is a gesture, however. It might a signal for the men behind her.. Or the one on the roof.

"You need to take more carein setting he tarps. These are wet. What assurance do I have that they fire properly in unfavourable weather?" That Hong Kong-accented English comes into play again, clearly intelligible but obviously Other from what the men are used to. "We have storm cover. Are we able to do a firing demonstration?"


The Goon near the car seems about to answer the woman, though whether he would give his blessing to test the guns or not is pretty much a moot point, for at that very moment the trunk lid is slammed closed. Closer inspection will find some curious sort of sticky webbing on the seam, holding it tightly closed. The figure on the roof dives from the rooftop, tucking arms to his sides in a tight head first plummet before at the last moment shooting out a strand of webbing that swings him from certain doom into a double footed kick directly into one of the perimeter guard's chests, hurling him hard into the side of one of the trucks. The nearest guards jerk their guns in that direction, firing blindly as the sweatsuited hero drops low to the ground.


"They are of a… shoddy quality anyway." When the gunk hits the car Shen blinks but there is no time for her to consider the ramifications. The goon looks up and gasps- and then his voice dies in his throat when his trachea collapses. The weapons smugglers are busy shooting at a kid in a hoodie so no one is prepared for when the slender Chinese woman explods into a frenzy of motion, the edge of a hand catching her guard in the throat and the next moment his flailing body flying through the air several meters and then crashing into the next nearest gunman. The third- of fifteen- whirls on Shen and fires a few quick shots, barrel illuminating him in the darkness. They trace the air behind her, skittering across the ground and throwing up small chunks of pavement. Shen dives behind nearby cover, snatching up a nearby rifle as she goes.


Oh yes, this is exactly what Spider-Man was looking for. Action. Hero work. The good stuff. The man throws himself to his back on the dirty pavement, shooting a web out to either side to wrap tightly around the ankles of the two men nearest him before he jerks them from their feet with an almighty snatch of those two webs. The men give out a pair of startled yelps, bullets shooting clumsily into the air as they fall to smack their heads on the pavement. Peter then throws himself back up to his feet and leaps up atop the nearest truck, holding his hands out to the side and yelling out, "Alright, alright! Just lay down your weapons and give up and no one has to get hurt!"

The goons apparently do not find this option preferrable because more than a few turn their rifles and hand guns on Peter, firing off a few rounds that has the kid yelling out in shock and diving off of the truck.


"They're not going to surrender to a random person in a hoodie. You should probably find some cover beofre you get yourself killed!" Shen-hua is sitll receiving less attention than Peter, somehow. Those webs are impressive and far flashier than the woman who decided not to return fire and instead quickly scaled the cargo container she was uing for cover and dropped down onto another one of the guards. She's all swift movements and precise timing. When people move to shoot at Shen she is already ducking into cover, weaving between objects and people to get close, and then launching brutal offensives. One man has his nose broken with the butt of a rifle. Another seems disinclined to move after a few kicks to the ribs. So far so good. Shen is never out in the openfor long, which makes it easier to focus on peter and forget her entirely.


"Hey!" the ski masked figure yells out even as he performs a circuit of rather impressive cartwheels, back handsprings, and outright flips, in his efforts to dodge the gunfire zinging around him. "Weren't you just /with/ these guys?" he finishes as he flips over the head of one mesmerized thug and punches him hard on either side of the head, sending the man wilting to the ground.

The goons are beginning to catch on to the fact that Shen is working against them, and as she runs and dodges they turn fire on her, the sound of bullets striking the steel containers and cars ringing out over the sound of the falling rain and thunder.


"In a manner of speaking," Shen replies just before the staccato hail of bullets of steel drowns everything else out. Guns are loud. They're far louder htan anything, including movies, has ever prepared most people to wintess. Everything around Shen and the goons present is blotted out from hearing when fully automatic fire strikes echoing corrugated steel, fragments of bullets and shipping containers both spraying in all directions. The semi truck that helpfully hauled the container into the lot earlier this week has its windshield shattered, tires exploded, and doors laced with holes. They're just lucky the Jazz Club in the next lot will have no idea this is going on with the weather how it is. By this point Hsen is crouched against hte container, breahing heavily, rifle in hand. Listening to what is occurring just on the other side. Waiting. Wishing she could risk covering her ears.


Around ten of the fifteen goons still remain on their feet, their attention divided by the sweatsuit and ski mask covered Peter Parker and Shen. Peter springs between the wall of one building and a car, his movements far faster than a normal human should be capable of and as such he is not spotted by the goon he is running toward until the last moment. The man swings his weapon around and fires off two shots, but it is too late. Peter hurls himself at the wall, hands leading where they connect and hold somehow. His feet tuck quickly, sticking to the wall before his knees bend and he launches himself in a flying tackle into the thug's side and taking him to the ground. A quick punch to the face knocks the man out and Peter yells out, "Oh great! I am fighting nine bad guys and one "in a manner of speaking" bad guy."


Around the corner of a building not far away is a small figure in black and grey pressed against the wall. A thing also seldom displayed in movies is how common ricochets are. Cassandra takes no chances with the explosion of gunfire that just erupted. Waiting for the weapons fire to become more sporadic won't be long, thankfully.

After a few moments, when she hears a few more interesting noises coming from that direction, she'll take off in a sprint that way. Cassandra had been ghosting Shen, as she is periodically wont to do. Anyone with her particular skillset is worth doing homework on. If they are worth doing homework on, they are likely worth occasionally sticking her neck out for. Her sprint will carry her in a beeline for the other side of the truck where she'll come to cover, taking stock of where the badguys are to figure out her own gameplan for this situation.


"To them you're the bad guy," Shen offers stoically once the noise has died down enough that voices can be heard. She takes a deep breath and briefly sticks her head out to take stock fo the situation. Of the remaining criminals three are reeling and one is clutching at his head. None of them realized how much noise the echoing would make either apparently. It's a good object lesson. "How do I know you aren't, in fact?"

That's when Shen breaks cover, albeit just long enough to grasp one of the staggering me by the shoulder and drag him backward. Another rounds on her with is gun and hesitates to fire. She drops the unconscious smuggler as soon as she's out of sight once more. Then it's a matter of edging around the shipping container… And then finding her way underneath the truck bed as men are rounding on her position. She takes a rifle with her.

Shen might not be superhuman but she seems to have watched few Bruce Lee movies while she was in Hong Kong. And probably James Bond while stateside. Cassandra has thus far gone unnoticed.


Peter is just about to answer when a goon apparently sees the writing on the wall as his comrades are being taken down left and right. He takes off at a sprint, running away from the battle and instead of answering Shen, Peter yells out, "I got him!" With that, Peter shoots a web up and snatches the closest rooftop and with a quick tug he pulls himself from the ground and is swinging away giving chase. If Cassandra is looking up, she might note a shadowy figure swinging by overhead.


Cassandra Cain doesn't miss much. When light is blotted out, she looks up to see that familiar figure going by. Interesting evening. She'll round the corner around the front of the truck to get a better look at who is left, careful to keep stealth discipline as she goes. Seeing the cars and the men moving in, she'll creep back to begin her own skirmish operation here. With Spiderman away, she isn't going to leave Shen alone to deal with this.

Carefully, Cassandra will make her way back to climb atop the container. The high ground is always a good position. Once up there, she'll lay flat on her belly and wait for her chance to ambush as she listens to the men moving in.


Three men are moving around the left side of the container and circling past the cab of the truck while two more are comign around it to the right. Shen is still laying beneath the vehicle on her backm, rifle in hand. There's mud o nher outfit but at least there's enough space to maneuver.

"Where'd she go? Check inside the truck," one of the guys calls after seeing no one behind the the enormous steel crate. The other two men are moving from car to car, discretely checking uderneath and through the windows with their rifles held aloft. The echo of the container being opened up is enough to draw the attention of every goon present, the improperly door swinging outward with a groan.

That's when Shen rolls out from underneath the container. She's got her rifle against her side but the first thign she does is grab the goon nearest the opening door from behind by the leg, knocking his head against the cargo container as he goes down. Which just leaves one behind the truck, three in front, and the two searchers, who are just now clicking on their flashlights to shine them on seats.


Cassandra Cain will listen quietly and patiently, getting a keen idea of everyone present. She hears the action on the backside, so turns her attention to the front. Pushing up, she'll slip her feet beneath her and wait for the ones up front to begin moving back, not wanting to expose herself needlessly to the searchers.

The three will split with two on one side and one on the other to investigate the sounds at the container. Cassandra will zero in on the pair, waiting for them to move past before dropping down with her legs scissoring over the shoulders of one to faceplant him to the ground under her own weight. Grabbing him by the scruff of his neck, she'll smash his face down on the asphalt one more time for good measure before quickly rising to deal with his partner.

Cassandra takes hold of the barrel of the man's rifle to keep it safely panned away from her as she continued to bull forward, thrusting a palm against it to smack it into the guy's face for disorientation. Her next maneuver is to drop the magazine for him before deftly palming him in the throat, then relieving him of the rifle to club him into nightnight with it.


Shen's second thug only gets a split second to wonder about what is going on before she pops around the corner. He's raising his rifle but she''d already been anticipating his presence so as the muzzle is lifting her rifle is levelled. Two quick shhots, both striking the smuggler in the chest and then he falls to the ground in a heap. The flash of light reflected against the cargo container makes it difficult to tell at any distance who shot whom.

Then the isolated searcher is coming around the corner. She ducks down as he does to keep out of line of fire and lunges. It's a smooth motion that has her hitting the man in the abdomen with the butt of a rifle and then kicking him repeaedly when he hits the ground. Who said Kung Fu must always be elegant? Not Shen Kuei, certainly.

The two men searching the cars look over to see the chaos that has transpired, thirteen of their fellows littering the ground. Both of them make a run for it, puttign their headstart to their best advantage. Judging by her expression Shen is considring shooting them as they run away.

At least the woman is now in the open where Cass can see her when she comes around the vehicle.


Cassandra Cain doesn't much care for guns, or she might consider it herself. Alas, she's on the opposite side of the truck from being able to see them anyway. She dusts her hands and nice new pants off while glancing over to see that Cat is fine in the meantime.

Cassandra contemplates going sneaky and heading back at this point, knowing Shen will be annoyed at having been followed. Eventually, she decides to try for it after several moments of mental debate. She'll slip back into the shadows and start creeping away. This'll be a challenge with so much open space, but the silence necessary is a snap for her at least being a thoroughly trained ninja.


BLAM. The crack of a rifle firing is enough to cause he world to echo again. Shen is, at least, not shooting at the cargo containers so it is possible to hear in the seconds afterward. Both of the figures drop in quick succession. She takes a deep breath afterward and slowly exhales before turning to survey the lot. Cassandra may be silent but Shen is in the habit of hunting, and being hunted by, ninja.

"Cassandra," the woman calls out in a quiet, even voice. "You should not follow me this far and leave without saying hello." She shakes her head slowly and then starts to walk into the middle of the lot. She doesn ot bother to pursue the fleeing girl. Her body language is simple: Shen is waiting to see what Cassie will do now that she has been called out.


Cassandra Cain groans at having been spotted. She'll quit trying, knowing better by this point. Turning about she'll walk easily back over now that the last two have obviously been dealt with.

Strolling easily over to Shen Kuei, she cracks a half grin and offers,"Hi."


"Hello." Shen's tone and manner are severe. She continues to stare out across the lot for a few long seconds, black hair whipping behind her on the slgiht breeze. Finally the woman takes a deep breath and turns toward Cassandra. Rain drops trace the outline of her face and fall toward the ground. She nsis soaked- as the girl in front of her must be as well. Finally she cracks just a hint of a smile as well. That much would be enough to speak volumes to someone like Cassandra.

"You seem to be unhurt." Shen gestures for Cassto lift her left arm, then her right.. A brief visual inspection isrequired to ascertain the truth of that statement.


Cassandra Cain is indeed unhurt, having apparently missed the worst of this. She shrugs nonchalantly at the observation, being apparently soaked indeed but utterly oblivious to the fact having lived on the streets for so long. There's worse things besides. Like being lashed, cut, or shot. Which she has.

Cassandra will raise her brows at Shen's demeanor, and reply,"Were novices."


"They were," Shen agrees with a faint nod. She bites her bottom lip briefly and then glances off across the lot toward the vehicles again. "Law enforcement, the woman observe and then she starts to walk. "They will be late. The storm covered most of this," the woman observes, tilting her head slightly as she does. Shen ignores the rain completely, moving until she ends up beside one of the vehicles. She makes no attempt to hide the fact that she is taking a couple pistols, several magazines, a duffel bag to stow it in. Then it is apparently time to leave as Shen Kuei moves to do so without even slowing down.


Cassandra Cain will follow Shen as easily as she's been thus far. She's mildly relieved that Shen's not more annoyed than she is. She'll hrm as she runs by a downed gunman and take his rifle, figuring maybe she has a collection of some sort. Her expression is mild distaste as she slings it. She doesn't like killing, and that's all one really does with guns. Less control for guaranteeing injury or disability than even with a sword.


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